What countries should i go to speak spanish and french?

in my third year of my uni course (french and spanish) i take a year abroad, 6 months for each language. i am familiar with france and spain already and would like to take the oppurtunity to go further afield maybe south america but im a bit stuck for french though…the carribbean? is the french different there? any recommended countries/cities?


  1. For French, other than France, there is of course Martinique and St. Martin, as well as Quebec. There are also several countries in Africa where people speak French. And in Europe: Luxembourg, Switzerland, and Belgium all have very large French speaking populations.

    In Canada, I’d recommend either Montreal, if you want big, or Quebec City, if you want smaller.

    The French is different, of course – as the English is different from the US to Scotland to Australia. But it would be a wonderful experience.

    Haiti may not be so great an idea. Most people there actually speak Haitian Creole, rather than actual French. It wouldn’t be an easy transition.

    For Spanish, you have the entirety of Central and South America (with the exception of Brazil) open to you. You also have parts of the Caribbean, such as Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. Again, the Spanish will be different – often quite different – from that of Spain.

    As for which to pick – if nothing jumps out at you, think about where you want to work, and in what field, once you are done with university. What experiences do you think would be most valuable? Would spending some time in N. America (Quebec, the Caribbean, maybe Mexico) be considered notable by employers? If so, let that guide you. Also allow yourself to be influenced by the type of experience you want to have. Urban/rural. Modern and sophisticated/more laid back/or even rough. Consider weather, if you’d like; and culture; and etc.

    My personal choices? I’d pick Montreal, for the French. Travel around while you’re based there, to all of Francophone Canada. And take a short flight (maybe it’s 4ish hours) down to the French speaking parts of the Caribbean for a vacation! For the Spanish, I’d love to spend some serious time in Argentina, and travel out on short trips from there. But I’m a city sort of girl, with side trips to country. Only you’ll know what’s right for you.

  2. Yes, the accents in the caribbean are different than in the mother countries. I remember when I moved from Haiti to Bruxelles, the only way I could communicate in French was in writing, for about the first month before I adjusted my accent.

    If you want to practice French, there is only ONE accent to have, and that is a Parisian Accent… as for Spanish, then the Castillian Spanish is the purest accent.

  3. I would suggest Girona, it’s pretty close to the French border, so you’ll also get decent immersion when you travel to France (just a few hours away. That way you can structure it the way you want (for example if you need more help with French you can decide on the spot to spend more time in France). Plus, you’ll learn a bit of Catalan too, not a bad proposition.


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